The first named storm of 2017 is set to batter the North West with extreme winds and torrential rain, the Met Office has said.
Storm Aileen is forecast to hit parts of the UK with fierce winds tonight (Tuesday, September 12) in weather so severe that two Met Office weather warnings will be in force.
Some of the worst winds are expected across the North West and North Wales, and are expected to be so fierce that the Met Office has issued a separate amber warning for areas including Chester.
Yesterday they issued a yellow wind warning from 8pm tonight until 10am tomorrow (Wednesday, September 13), but the amber warning – in place between midnight tonight until 6am – will see gusts of 65-75mph.
Chief forecaster Frank Saunders said: “Storm Aileen is expected to bring strong winds of up to 75mph to a central segment of the UK and an amber weather warning has been issued.
“As well as the strong winds, there will be some heavy rain pushing eastwards overnight which could see accumulations of 30-40mm."
Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service and Cheshire police have also warned drivers to avoid driving on bridges or high open roads in the next few days.
"We advise drivers to slow down and be aware of side winds and be particularly conscious of the dangers posed by debris that may have blown into the roadway," a spokesperson said. "As wind speed increases the pressure it exerts on your car increases too.
"Wind rarely blows steadily, and sudden gusts can catch-out even the most experienced driver. Expect sudden gusts at any time but particularly on open stretches of road, when passing bridges or gaps in hedges or when overtaking high-sided vehicles."
Road, air and rail services are also expected to be disrupted and some power cuts may occur.
The Met Office dismissed any link between Storm Aileen and the hurricanes across the Atlantic which have pummelled islands in the Caribbean and parts of the USA in recent days.
Met Office Deputy Meteorologist Chris Tubbs said: “This system originated well north in the Atlantic Ocean, independent of the current Caribbean hurricanes.
"It is a fairly typical autumnal low pressure system often seen here in the UK especially later in autumn.
Anyone looking to report a power failure is advised to call the national helpline on 105.
To report a fallen tree you should contact Cheshire West and Chester Council on 0300 123 7027.